Wednesday, April 1, 2009

For immediate release: March 31, 2009
Contact: Professor Steve Balkin,; ph: 312-341-3696

Will Chicago Olympics be another Vancouver?

The preparation for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics is plagued by
cost overruns, environmental degradation, and displacement to the
city’s poorest. Will this pattern repeat itself in Chicago if
Chicago gets the 2016 Summer Olympics? To answer this question,
Conrad Schmidt’s 90 minute documentary video about the preparation for
the Vancouver Olympics, “Five Ring Circus” will be shown, with a panel
discussion afterwards.

This event is free and will occur on Tuesday evening, April 7 at
6:15PM in the 2nd Floor Congress Lounge at Roosevelt University’s main
campus, 430 S. Michigan Avenue. It is hosted by Roosevelt
University’s Department of Economics and Social Justice Program. The
public is welcome.

Steve Balkin, Professor of Economics, says, “The Chicago Olympics 2016
bid seems to have strong forces both for and against. The
International Olympics Committee is in town and there will be two big
public protests on Thursday, April 4. So, I thought a balanced and
public examination of this seems warranted. My students are studying
cost theory and this is a very good case. The issues surrounding the
Olympics involve not only fiscal responsibility but also sustainable
economics, democracy, compatibility with an appropriate vision for the
future of Chicago, and social justice.”

The panel afterwards will consist of four people: (1) Professor of
Political Science Larry Bennett from DePaul University < 773-325-1973, >; (2) Stephen Alexander, Senior Researcher at the
DePaul University Egan Urban Center
< 312-362-6536 >; (3) Edward Stuart, Professor of Economics at
Northeastern Illinois University < 773-442 5695, >;
and (4) Pat Hill, Executive Director of the African-American Police
League and Co-Convener of the Olympics Human Rights Project of Chicago
< 773-330-6960, >. The panel will be
moderated by Steve Balkin, Professor of Economics at Roosevelt
University < 312-341-3696; >. All are
available for interviews.

For background information, the Five Ring Circus video can be
previewed on Youtube in eight parts:

Larry Bennett and Stephen Alexander wrote an excellent November 2008
report: Chicago and the 2016 Olympics. See:

Pat Hill has a blog at:

Other helpful websites include: ; ; and .

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